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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Mar 4, 2013

Gov. Vilma Santos' Much Publicized Indie Film, 'Ekstra', Demoralizes Other Cinemalaya Filmfest Entries

SOMEONE wrote that the other entries at the 2013 Cinemalaya Filmfest are feeling demoralized because of all the hype that “Ekstra, The Bit Player” starring Vilma Santos and directed by Jeffrey Jeturian are getting in advance. They feel that they have no chance against the film come awards night, particularly the other actresses who would be competing with Ate Vi for best actress come awards night. “Wala na silang gana kasi they feel wala silang chance sa ‘Ekstra’ and Vilma Santos,” so we heard.

We don’t think this is true since “Ekstra” is competing only in the Director’s Showcase category and not the New Breed category for neophyte filmmakers that has more entries. The other four entries in Director’s Showcase are “Amor Y Muerte” by our good friend Cesar Evangelista, “The Liars” by Gil Portes, “Porno” by Adolf Alix and “Sana Dati” by Jerrold Tarog. Aside from “Ekstra”, the only that has started shooting is “Amor”. The others have yet to start filming. And we don’t think it’s Cesar who’s demoralized as he’s all fired up by his entry, written by Jerry Gracio and set in the 16th century starring Althea Vega and Markki Stroem.

Of course, it’s only to be expected that “Ekstra” will be the most anticipated entry in the Cinemalaya this year as it’s the first time that an actress of Ate Vi’s stature has made a movie for this annual festival of independent films. Writers like us are writing about it also because its producer, Atty. Joji Alonso of Quantum Films, furnish is with a steady supply of stories and photos taken while filming on the set, with her supported by the likes of Marian Rivera and Piolo Pascual no less.

Instead of being daunted by Ate Vi’s entry, we think the other filmmakers should just consider it a big challenge to make their own work of superior and true festival quality. May the best film and the best actress win.